This essay is a theoretical exploration of a new budgetary system to cope with fiscal uncertainty and instability. 1 It examines policies requiring positive year-end balances and infers that annual budget cycles lead to a mismatch between the budget cycle and the continuity of public service provision. The author considers a multiyear perspective on budgeting as a potential solution, with countercyclical fiscal reserves to help ensure stability during fluctuating economic conditions. By adopting budget stabilization funds and keeping sufficient reserves, states can better maintain trend-level public services during recessions. Panel data analysis provides empirical evidence that such funds helped stabilize state general expenditures during downturns. The adoption of countercyclical fiscal policy and budget stabilization funds is a step toward a longer-term perspective on budgeting, thus promoting fiscal stability over the economic cycle.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Public Administration